Middle East’s biggest solar energy plant to be built in Saudi Arabia

30 November 2022 Riyadh, KSA
  • PIF-owned Badeel and ACWA Power to develop 2,060 MW solar photovoltaic facility in Makkah province
  • Project reflects PIF’s commitment to develop 70% of Saudi Arabia’s renewable energy by 2030
  • Plant is key to Vision 2030 goal to have at least half of the country’s energy supply derived from renewables
The biggest solar energy plant in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) is set to be built in Saudi Arabia, following power purchase agreements between the PIF-owned Water and Electricity Holding Company (Badeel) and ACWA Power, in which PIF holds a stake.
The plant will be jointly owned by Badeel and ACWA Power, a developer of renewable power and green hydrogen plants. Each will hold a 50% stake through the establishment of Shuaibah Two Electrical Energy Company, according to a company statement.
The Shuaibah 2 facility, set to be built in Makkah province, is expected to begin commercial operations by the end of 2025.
Yazeed A. Al-Humied, Deputy Governor and Head of MENA Investments at PIF, said: “This marks a key achievement toward PIF’s commitment to develop 70% of Saudi Arabia’s renewable energy by 2030. Utilities and Renewables is one of PIF’s priority sectors as part of its domestic strategy, which focuses on unlocking the capabilities of promising sectors to enhance Saudi Arabia’s efforts in diversifying revenue sources.”
The Shuaibah Two Electrical Energy Company also announced a power purchase agreement for the project with the Saudi Power Procurement Company (SPPC), the offtaker [the purchaser of renewable energy in the project]. Badeel and ACWA Power will develop, own, and operate the 2,060 MW solar photovoltaic facility, while the electricity generated will be sold to SPPC. Once in operation, the plant will be capable of powering 350,000 homes.
Under Saudi Arabia’s transformative economic and social strategy Vision 2030, at least half of the country’s energy supply will be derived from renewables by 2030, while an ambitious national target to reach net zero emissions has been set for 2060 – targets supported by PIF investments. 
The Fund also backs the Sudair Solar plant, which is being built by Badeel and ACWA Power with the Saudi Aramco Power Company. Sudair will be capable of producing up to 1.5 gigawatts, enough to power 185,000 households, while cutting carbon emissions by 2.9 million tons annually.